In Ile-de-France, "recruiters are now targeting 11-12 year olds ..."

In Ile-de-France, "recruiters are now targeting 11-12 year olds ..."

A study of the Paris-Ile-de-France league reveals and details the very strong representation of players from the Ile-de-France in L1, training centers and major European leagues. Ali Moucer, regional technical director of the League, decrypts the success of the Île-de-France fishpond, but also the need for its management.

How do you explain that there are so many pro players from the Paris region?

ALI MOUCER. The trend accelerated in the 2000s. Already, there is a large population density in Ile-de-France. It is one of the largest fishponds in the world with the São Paulo region in Brazil. An almost inexhaustible pool. It is also due to the fact that we have competitions of good level with big oppositions, much more than in province. The children are already in an important level of requirement and make the difference, when they arrive in training center, on commitment, speed and pace. Even those who do not go to the center can become pros and internationals. Look at Kanté, Mahrez, Ntep or Ben Yedder.

Are you witnessing an upsurge in the number of recruiters around the grounds?

It has grown from year to year. Today, there are so many that it is difficult to identify who is watching and for whom he is observing. The English clubs in particular are very present. What we can regret is that before they came to supervise players of 14-15 years, but as these already have almost all commitments in training centers, today, recruiters are more likely to 11-12 years old … It's very young. It's a bet. And, before, a young person in a training center had a good chance of becoming a pro. Today, it is rather the opposite because the professional clubs take a lot not to miss a nugget.

How do you help the Ile-de-France clubs to cope with the requests?

Our advantage is the quality of supervision. We have good educators who participate a lot in the training we put in place. We give them advice and we talk about these aspects. We also try to advise parents during departmental and regional selections. After, once they have visited the facilities of the pros clubs, it is often the financial aspect that makes the difference in their choice.

Can this turn the heads of young people and their loved ones?

Many parents have their heads on their shoulders, but some lose their feet. They write to me often. I have the example of a father who had sent me a letter by his lawyer because his son had not been caught in a departmental selection U 13 serving as an entrance test in Clairefontaine. There are also many who time their child's play time during selections or detections and see if he plays well in his job, to find out if they had the same chances as others!

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